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Is your acne being caused by your diet?

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I had dermatologist after dermatologist tell me that my diet had nothing to do with my acne, and for years I believed them and took the prescribed drugs. Then I had a baby, my baby had colic, and I started having the worst cystic acne of my life. I mean full on raging cystic acne, painful, and deep and they would turn almost a black color. It was embarrassing and awful to say the least. It was also very damaging to my self esteem.

Then I started doing some research. I had always been into eating healthy and staying slim, but I never connected my diet with my skin. But here it was scattered across the internet in blogs, articles and recent studies, people claiming that they cut out dairy and got on a whole foods, raw, paleo or some more healthful diet and their acne was cured. I wasn't convinced just yet, because I'd been shamboozled before and I wasn't about to get my hopes up, but I figured it couldn't hurt to try cutting out all dairy for a month and seeing what happened.

Well, what happened next was incredible. Within a week, no new cysts had formed, my son's colic seemed better, and I felt a little better as well. After a full month, the cysts were gone! My face looked clearer than it had since I was 14! I couldn't believe it, all these years I had suffered from acne and dairy was the cause. Why didn't any one tell me!!! I was really excited about this discovery but also a tiny, wee bit, angry at all the dermatologists that had never even acknowledged that my acne could be caused by my diet.

So what's the science behind all this? Why can dairy cause acne?

Hear are my theories since surprise! surprise! not a lot of research has been done on the diet acne connection.

Dairy contains hormones, these aren't just any hormones, these are hormones that can grow a baby cow into a full size 1000-1800 lb cow. The hormones that dominate are estrogen and progesterone. So essentially this could produce estrogen dominance in your body. Here are some symptoms of estrogen dominance according to


  • bloating
  • swelling and tenderness in the breasts
  • decreased sex drive
  • irregular menstrual periods
  • headaches
  • mood swings
  • fibrocystic developments in the breast
  • weight gain
  • hair loss
  • cold hands or feet
  • feeling tired or lacking energy
  • difficulty with memory
  • trouble sleeping
  • increased symptoms of premenstrual syndrome or PMS
  • Here's some more reading from Harvard about hormones in milk
  • Symptoms of high progesterone levels: according to
  • An imbalance of this hormone can lead to numerous negative side effects. Symptoms of high levels of progesterone include:
    • Anxiety
    • Bloating
    • Breast tenderness
    • Depression
    • Fatigue
    • Loss of libido
    • Mood swings
    • Muscle weakness
    • Vaginal dryness

    Other less common symptoms of high levels of progesterone include:

    • Acne
    • Greasy skin
    • Headaches
    • Hot flashes
    • Incontinence
    • Urinary infections
    • Weight gain

    So my theory is essentially a hormone imbalance issue.

    Here's what I did personally to correct the problem.

    Cut out all dairy and later wheat because I found wheat caused rashes, hives and breakouts to appear as well.

    Side note: I had always been a rashy, blotchy skinned, seasonal allergies, some shellfish, fruit and some nut allergy person as well. My food allergies I've found are high histamine foods ( definition of histamine- a compound that is released by cells in response to injury and in allergic and inflammatory reactions, causing contraction of smooth muscle and dilation of capillaries.) This is a new development for me so I'm still doing a lot of research on this.

    Supplements that helped tremendously! These were super important to the healing of my skin.

    I am not affiliated with any of these brands, I just believe them to be high quality

    Gelatin- only from grass fed cows ( I make gummies and eat a couple a day or make bone broth soups)

    Gelatin helps your body produce collagen which can fight and reverse the signs of aging, acne scars, etc. But it also helps heal your gut which is very important to healing your skin. Here's a good article on more of the benefits

    Vitamin D- Garden of life Vegan kind

    Here is a great article that will help you surmise if you have a vitamin D deficiency

    Probiotics (so important for helping heal your gut!) Your gut can be damaged by many things from improper eating to antibiotics. If your gut is damaged it can "leak" and cause something called leaky gut syndrome, which can cause allergies, and a whole host of problems. Here's a good article on leaky gut symptoms

    B complex vitamins: Garden of life raw B complex is my favorite.

    B vitamins help metabolize food and give you energy.

    And vitamin C this is one of the brands I use

    But I also use garden of life Raw C.

    Vitamin C also plays a part in the production of collagen and elastin but it can also help heal infections and prevent or shorten viral illnesses. Vitamin C has been shown to have an effect on a number of cancers as well, it's powerful stuff. Here's an article about that

    So you may be asking what do I eat?

    Here's a quick rundown of the staples in my diet:

    Organic Black beans

    Organic Rice

    Organic Bone broths

    Organic Raw fruit and veggies

    Organic Grass fed meat

    Free Range Eggs

    If I get a hankering for cheese, I stick with goat cheese, it's much easier to digest and does not seem to produce allergic reactions in most people.

    I try to stay away from processed foods, since there are all sorts of things in them, most of which are hard to pronounce and therefore I don't consider to be real food.

    Lastly, my skin care regimen:

    As you may know by now I have formulated a line of skin care products for those that suffer with acne, and I use the products everyday myself. They are natural, organic ingredients with no parabens/sulfates, chemicals, synthetics, etc. I grow a lot of the herbs used in my products and wild harvest some as well.

    I use this soap once a day

    I use this face mask/scrub a couple times a week

    I use these serums on a daily basis, after every time I wash my face

    And these are the acne kits I have formulated and personally used.

    On my etsy store you can see all the reviews my products have received.

    Lastly! I am not a doctor and you should consult your doctor when making dietary changes and adding new products into your life especially if you are pregnant/nursing or have a medical conditions. These are my opinions and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

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